Age Appropriate chores for young children

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Age appropriate chores for children are so important!

age-appropriate chores for kids

Age Appropriate chores for young children (ages 2-7)

Children need chores. Age appropriate chores are important for kids! They make them feel needed and helpful. They teach responsibility. They are important. If your children learn to help now, you will have children that will be able to work later, allowing them the ability to work hard and keep a job, or work hard to keep their marriage strong. Teach them to work hard now – and do it for the Glory of the one who made them.
As hard as it is, do not do everything for your children! Let them do what they can.

Remember the quote: fish for me & feed me for a day…. teach me to fish & feed me for a lifetime. (unknown source) How true with our children!

age appropriate chores

My children are 6, 5, 3 & a baby, so these chores are specific to those ages.
Before I begin with our list, you need to know that your children were not born knowing how to do these chores. You must walk them through it, teach them how you want it done. Do this with each chore until you have gone through them all (just do one or two a day).

Our chores are listed on index cards & placed in a basket. 

Chore Basket

The basket is in a place that they can reach it (we keep our in our pantry). When it is “time to do your chores”, they grab the basket themselves & bring it to the table. They close their eyes, reach in and pick from this basket…

THE CHORES ON THE CARDS IN OUR BASKET INCLUDE:
chores

  • Clean the shutters behind the kitchen table (their food gets on these from their sticky hands!) :)
  • Clean out everything UNDER your bed.
  • Wipe bathroom sink and vanity in main bathroom & their bathroom.
  • Clear & clean the table after dinner
  • Sweep hallway upstairs with broom & dustpan
  • Put away ALL shoes in garage by the door (we have 3 spots for shoes – they each have their own baskets at these places, so its easy to do & takes a second to put them away)
  • Clean the outside of the toilet (bottom too) in those same bathrooms.
  • “I love you- pick another chore, please!” (this is on 2 cards, just for a reminder)
  • Sweep the kitchen floors
  • Sweep the hallway upstairs
  • Clean out the van (bring in all garbage, coats, shoes…) – I do this on 3 cards, so they could even both get them & do it together.
  • Empty all garbage in the bathrooms and their bedroom into one big garbage bag (getting garbage from all cans)
  • Clean the steps with a broom and then a damp rag (wooden steps).  If you have carpet- have them use a damp sponge to get the dirt or pet hair if you have a pet.  Have them use a small vacumn if you have one (the tiny kind for steps & small areas)
  • Pick up everything on pantry floors (our art supplies are in there, so coloring books and crayons end up on the floors a lot)
  • Sweep the front porch
  • Sweep the back porch
  • Dust furniture in the room that mom or dad pick (they use a sock on their hands)
  • Pick up toys (even if you didn’t make the mess!) on the living room floor
  • Organize the mud room bench (see make a mudroom bench to see how we made it) – they hang up coats, put shoes in the right baskets, hang up their backpacks under the correct name…

** Keep reading for younger kids chores…

For our just-turned three year old-  He usually pulls a chore card, but I make up one since he can’t read it.  I will say something like “go pick up the blankets and put them away.”  Or “Pick up the pillows on the floor”.  Something easy and safe that he can do without help.

That’s it- they get 3 chores a day in the summer and two chores a day during the school year.  We used to give an extra chore for complaining, but we no longer do this because they have since become very proud of their work and they seem to enjoy helping and like to show us how well they’ve done.  They like being a part of what helps to keep everything going and they see that when they help us do chores, we all have more time to play together. 

We also have “daily responsibilities”. These are done on a daily basis. These include: Make bed, clean up room, clean up after every meal- just your stuff (plates, napkins, cups) , put clothes away (I put them into their own baskets & they are waiting for them by their dressers), unload the dishwasher with me, get dressed before you go downstairs in the morning on school days, brush teeth & use mouthwash.  These are not chores- they are done ON TOP of their “picked” chores.

“And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. ” Colossians 3:17 (I actually just sing “Do everything you do for the Glory of the One that made you… yeah He made you.” when they do their chores if I feel like they are being sluggish about it.

I hope that helped you to create some age Appropriate chores for kids. :)  I would LOVE to hear what chores you have your children do in your house!!  I am always revisiting our chores and editing them to their ages.

Here’s a great little cheat sheet from flandersfamily.info if you want something to hang on your refrigerator as a reminder. 
age appropriate chores

Do you want to see more kid ideas?  My favorite kid ideas below…. 

Here is the reward system that we use with our kids- it works wonders! 
Reward System for Kids

Teaching a child to keep their room clean

   Don’t forget to have some fun, too!

Kid friendly home

 

 

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Comments

  1. Jamie says

    This is great! My kids are 3 and 5, I am such a slacker when it comes to daily chore for them, although I do make them make their beds, clear the table, and pick up toys. I love the chore in a basket method, thanks for sharing!

    Bugs and Beans

  2. says

    Great idea! I like this better than a chart! My girls are awesome at folding clothes! I have also taught my four oldest kids to wash dishes. Sweeping the driveway is another one the kids help with.
    I can’t wait to try this method instead of a chart!
    Thanks for the idea:)

  3. says

    Great article thanks! I am changing up chores and the way we do things for my son now that he is not in Kindergarten anymore. Now what about allowances? Do you give those and how much?

  4. Adrienne says

    Great tips! My boys (4 & 6) have chores:
    Feed dog twice a day – water too!
    Recycling weekly
    Laundry ( my 6 year old does this – brings the basket to the laundry room, puts in washer, adds soap, turns it on (with my help), switches it over to dryer, brings basket back up, helps fold and puts it away for him and his brother.
    They also put groceries away, clear the table, sweep the floors, dust, and water the plants. I think I will a few more after reading this!

  5. Megan says

    My two year old daughter takes her dishes (she has plastic plates, cups, bowls ect) and puts them away in her own drawer. She also washes her table after meals and helps sweep, wipe counters/ cupboards ect. She loves to clean! If she spills she says “wash” and grabs a washcloth or paper towel and cleans it up :)

  6. Mama Huggs says

    I have a 15mo and a 2.5yo. Plus my brother-in-law lives in our house. He’s 16yo with a learning disorder so on some things he’s about 6yo and others he is 16yo. When did you start giving you baby chores?

    • Mama Huggs says

      The 16yo helps with laundry & unloads the dishwasher. The 2.5yo puts his dishes in the sink and helps me put the soap (finish powerball or gel pack) in the dishwasher. He also helps me when I switch the laundry by pushing the wet clothes into the dryer or bringing me dirty clothes from the basket. What are some age appropriate chores I could give the baby to get him involved in helping?

  7. says

    I love this! I have tried to do chores a few different ways before, including the framed chart with a dry erase maker. It ended up becoming just another coloring board for the kids! I love that they feel some atoning by being able to pick their own chores and so I laughed when you said you make up the chore for your 3yo! I have one who is 3 and duh!… She can’t read lol I will def be trying this method! Thanks.
    Do you mind if I share this on my blog? ( linked to this article)

  8. amlanders says

    This is a great idea! Honestly, I have a hard time keeping up with a chore chart for my kids. This will be a very happy medium!

  9. Sarah says

    I love this idea. Right now I have our chores listed on a poster board and they choose the easiest one and do it over and over… This would help get some of the other chores done too! I offer 25 cents a completed chore. If the chore wasn’t completed correctly and they have to go back and re-do it, they only get 10 cents. And if I have to make them go back a 3rd time, then they just did the chore for free! I also charge 25 cents for lying (because they just wasted my valuable time) so they have to work hard save up money! lol
    I have folding and putting away a basket of towels listed as a money making chore for my 7 yr old. And both my kiddos (4 and 7) wipe down the kitchen cabinets (the ones they can reach are the dirtiest ones!!). They also wipe down base boards and wood furniture with an old rag that I spray with pledge :) They are quite helpful when guests are coming and I have a ton of catch up cleaning to do!!

  10. monique says

    Cute…. and very helpful(i ended up here from another post but happen to read some of the comments and I have a suggestion (I did this when my kids were tiny (they are now almost 13 & almost 11)I did have chores for them but since the found read I would include a picture/clipart of the chore I wanted done (it worked….. mostly) it helped them to see it (it was written as well, for when they learned to read)
    Just my 2cents.

    AWESOME ideas…… been reading quite a few thanks

  11. Tina says

    I think this is great, but apart from asking my children to take their plates to the sink after dinner they do very little in the way of chores, practically nothing. I would love to introduce this, but am a little scared if I’m honest at dealing with the reactions. My son is 9 and has adhd, my daughter is 7 and I have a 2 year old girl.

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